mortgage

7 choices for underwater condo owner

Details of the dilemma
Details of the dilemma

The management company won't allow more than six units (10 percent of the total) to be rented. That 10 percent cap has been reached, and there's a waiting list (probably years long) of owners who want to rent out their units.

Before the condo board told her about the rental cap, she did some research and concluded that she could rent out her unit for $1,050 to $1,100 per month. She would be willing to rent it for that much, even though her mortgage, taxes, insurance and condo dues total $1,800 per month. "I would be renting it at a loss," Huss says in an interview. "I mean, there's nothing about this that's advantageous to me, except for the fact that I can try to move forward."

Bankrate asked a couple of lawyers to list Huss' options and the potential consequences. Matt Drewes is chairman of the community association law group within the law firm of Thomsen Nybeck, in Minneapolis. That means he is a specialist in laws about condominium and homeowner associations. Neil Garfinkel is partner in charge of real estate and banking practices for the New York City law firm of Abrams Garfinkel Margolis Bergson.

Both lawyers emphasize that there is no pain-free solution to Huss' dilemma. "None of these options are really ideal," Drewes says. "Obviously, these people are kind of stuck."

Here are some of her options, in rough order of least palatable to most:

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